Short and long term therapy for adolescents (age 15-19), adults, and couples. Services offered in English and Farsi.
Experiencing emotional turmoil and suffering is part of life, but at times we develop unhelpful behaviors, thoughts and feelings. You may find yourself lonely, isolated, exhausted, and down, or on the other hand stressed, panicked, uneasy, and anxious to name a few. These experiences can negatively impact you, people around you and your work. You are, however, wired for healing and growth!
How does therapy work: Psychotherapy is a well researched treatment recognized by many organizations such as the World Health Organization (WHO). It is a healing process that helps you gain access to essential resources in yourself and in your environment, to better cope with life’s problems, and to move forward. Through therapy you can gain better insight into yourself, identify patterns that are not so useful and develop new ones. You can also experience an alleviation of various psychological and somatic symptoms and experience more calm and joy.
Therapeutic Approach: In my practice I apply various research-based treatment approaches such as Psychodynamic therapy, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Sensorimotor psychotherapy, and Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT). This typically involves a combination of talk therapy, coaching/teaching new strategies, and experiential practices during session.
I also utilize the use of in-between session exercises (e.g., things to think about or write about, or skills to practice) to keep the momentum of therapy going.
We will also periodically revisit goals for therapy to ensure you’re on the right track.
Couples therapy: I also work with couples who are experiencing conflict due to personal and/or external factors. My approach with couples is from a systematic perspective by taking into account the whole context of the relationship (individual and family histories, personality, culture, socio-economic factors) to help the couple use more adaptive coping skills, to heal past wounds and to improve the quality of their relationship. No relationship is perfect but finding more harmony and contentment is possible. In the event that one partner or both want(s) to end the relationship I can help the couple find a healthier approach to working through this transition and offering support in a safe and confidential space. In addition to the therapeutic modalities mentioned above, I also integrate the Gottman method when working with couples.
My areas of expertise:
- Personal growth and self-awareness
- Self-esteem issues
- Stress management
- Peak performance
- Major life transitions and decisions
- Career concerns
- Identity issues (spirituality, sexuality, ethnicity, etc.)
- Relationship problems
- Anger management
- Grief and loss
I am licensed as a clinical psychologist with the Dubai Health Authority. I am also licensed in Canada with the College of Psychologists of Ontario and authorized for autonomous practice with adolescents, adults and couples.
I hold a Doctorate of Psychology in Clinical Psychology and a Masters in Counselling Psychology from Adler University in Chicago, Illinois, USA. Since 2009, I have provided psychological services in the following settings and with a diverse range of clients:
- McDowall Counselling and Consulting Group, Toronto, Ontario, CAN
- Chrysalis Centre Psychological and Counselling Services, Markham, Ontario, CAN
- University of California Counseling and Psychological Services, Merced, California, USA
- Northwestern University Counseling and Psychological Services, Chicago, Illinois, USA
- Associates in Behavioral Science, Chicago, Illinois, USA
- United Stand Counseling Center, Chicago, Illinois, USA
Articles Featuring Dr. Ava:
Why worry: OCD has ruined my life – I spend most of my day in the bathroom Gulf News published October 20, 2020.
Managing your mental health in Covid 19 times Middle East Campaign published October 13, 2020
Why Worry: ‘My wife’s in India and wants to come back, keeps nagging me. What can I do?’ Gulf News published September 16, 2020
Why Worry: COVID-19 means going back to India, where my husband cheated on me.Gulf News published July 23, 2020